Gender parity is a hot topic right now. It’s been everywhere, and I can’t help but think about it quite a lot… Being a female playwright and all… I mean here I am, writing plays and I have the most of the world telling me that theatre is dead and that I have no hope in making a career out of it, and then on top of all of that the chances are even lower because I’m a woman. Well I say phooey on that.
This is my personal solution to making things more equal…. I will continue to write plays and I will constantly work on writing the best plays I can. Additionally, I will continue to write mostly female characters. I don’t do this because I don’t like men, or because I think there aren’t talented men to work with… I do this in part because I am a former actor and I remember how frustrating it was to get a script and be disappointed by the 1 or 2 female parts contrasted by 4+ parts for men. Additionally, I do it because there are a ton of incredibly talented women here in the bay area. I’ve gone to a number of auditions, and they’ve all had a lot of fantastic women and only a hand full of men. I want my work to be done, and I try to make it as easy to do as possible. Including more women always seems to help. Let me tell you writing Golden Cleats my full length about Achilles taking place on a football field was not easily made into a play that had more female characters than male, but it’s important to me and so I did it.
I think that’s how this problem is going to get solved. We all need to step back and think about what we can personally do. Obviously artistic directors and literary managers will have more pull than a lowly playwright like me, but we all can do our part to better represent the communities which we hope to entertain and teach.